Iran reports 18,698 new COVID-19 cases, 2,534,855 in total

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Tehran [Iran], May 3 (ANI/Xinhua): Iran on Sunday reported 18,698 new COVID-19 cases, taking the country's total infections to 2,534,855.

The pandemic has so far claimed 72,484 lives in Iran, up by 394 in the past 24 hours, the Iranian Ministry of Health and Medical Education said in a written briefing published on its official website.

A total of 1,988,165 people has recovered from the disease or been discharged from hospitals across the country, while 5,443 remain in intensive care units, the ministry said.

The report added that 16,101,399 tests have so far been carried out across the country.

As of Sunday, 956,423 people have received the first doses of coronavirus vaccines and 218,631 got the second shots.

Earlier in the day, the Iranian Energy Minister Reza Ardakanian said Tehran will use the funds, frozen in Iraq due to the US sanctions, to pay Russia for vaccine doses against COVID-19.

As reported by the official IRNA news agency, Ardakanian made the announcement in a press conference after meeting with Iraqi Electricity Minister Majid Mahdi Hantoush.

Iran has recently implemented restrictions on businesses and travels in high-risk areas amid a new wave of the virus spreading in the country.

Iran reported the first cases of the disease in February 2020. (ANI/Xinhua)